Archive for Wednesday, September 19, 2007

MHS runner notches personal best time

September 19, 2007

The McLouth cross country team didn't have any medalists from Thursday's McLouth Invitational.

The Bulldogs came away with a personal record, though. Senior Martin Lucas finished in 55th place with a time of 21:55 in the 5K run. That's a minute-and-a-half better than his personal best.

This was positive news for McLouth, because Lucas wasn't sure before the season whether he would be running. He decided to join the Bulldogs for the cross country season at the last minute.

"I quite literally started running for this year at our Fall Sports Preview," Lucas said of the Aug. 24 event. "I drove to Lawrence and got my physical that day, got my clothes to come up here, then was able to get back and stretch with the team and run."

Lucas moved to McLouth last year. He attended East Newton High School, near Joplin, Mo., before the move.

The biggest obstacle for Lucas has been getting comfortable with his breathing patterns.

"I think his home course helped him a lot," McLouth cross country coach Jamie Noll said. "I think he's just now getting into better shape and bringing his times down. He's only been out for three weeks now. He's still a week-and-a-half behind everyone else."

Junior Gelia Gardner competed individually for the MHS girls cross country team. Gardner placed 41st with a time of 21:49 in the 4K run.

Gardner barely missed out on medaling for the past two weeks. On Thursday, she rolled her ankle right before the two-mile marker. It was sore the remainder of the race, but Gardner finished.

"There's a bad dip near the dam, so I assumed that's what she meant," Noll said. "It wasn't anything too major, but I'm sure it slowed her down some."

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